More rain this week means more flooding, and more danger of getting caught in a flood while driving.
Flash floods cause more deaths in the U.S. than any other weather phenomenon and more than half of those deaths are vehicle-related. Some deaths have already occurred in flash floods in Missouri this year and more flooding is happening with repeated rain this week.
Connie Burnham with the University of Missouri Extension says once a person is caught in a flash flood while driving options are limited, but getting out of the car is recommended.
“From there you just hope that you’re going to be able to either ride it out where your vehicle is going to stay upright and it’s not going to cover it, which it could, or that you’re going to be able to get to some kind of safety by trees and limbs that might be hanging out or something that you can grab onto that will stabilize you,” said Burnham.
She says the best thing to do is to avoid travel when flooding is possible, particularly at night when high water could be hard to see in time to stop.
“Even those roads that you’re traveling on, that you normally travel on, may become flooded very quickly,” said Burnham. “If it’s dark, you first of all don’t know if there’s a road in front of you, or you don’t know that there might have been debris that was coming with the water.”
Burnham also advises never intentionally driving into high water.